Mandla (Madhya Pradesh), April 24 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday called for a social movement for protecting girls in the wake of increasing rapes reported from different parts of the country and said families have to teach their sons to become responsible.
Addressing a gathering here to mark the National Panchayati Raj Day, he also said that museums will be set up in states where tribals have played a role in the freedom struggle and called for a resolve for transformation of villages in the next four years.
He launched the Rashtriya Gram Swaraj Abhiyan, unveiled a road map for overall development of tribals during the next five years and laid the foundation stone of an LPG bottling plant of Indian Oil Corporation at Maneri in this Madhya Pradesh district.
With almost a year left for the next Lok Sabha polls, the programme in this predominantly tribal district is seen as an effort by the BJP-led government to reach out to rural masses. Madhya Pradesh will face assembly polls later this year.
In his nearly 45-minute speech, Modi suggested steps to boost farmers income, improve soil health and boost ground water recharge. He laid stress on the use of technology, including mobile phones, to bring transparency and efficiency in implementing welfare initiatives.
Citing the ordinance brought by his government last week that provides for death sentence to those convicted of raping a child below 12 years of age and life term to those raping a child below 16, he also mentioned the applause that Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan received when he mentioned of the ordinance during his speech.
The Prime Minister called for steps to give more respect to the daughters in the families.
“The government in Delhi listens to your heart. We should learn to give respect to daughters in the family, we should increase the importance of daughters in the family and start teaching sons about responsibility. It will never be difficult to protect daughters if we start teaching sons about responsibility.
“The one who acts devilishly will face the gallows. We have to build a social movement and we can all together bring out the country from this problem,” he said.
Modi’s remarks came in the wake of nationwide outrage over the rape and murder of a minor in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kathua district and other similar incidents including a case in Unnao, Uttar Pradesh where the main accused is a BJP MLA.
He also said that some of the real heroes of the freedom struggle have not got the attention they deserved, and he did not know “what problem came”.
Referring to the sacrifice by leaders from the tribal community in the struggle for freedom, specially after 1857, he said they fought many big fights for the country’s honour.
Modi said apart from Birsa Munda and Rani Avantibai, sacrifices have been made by a lot of people.
“It is my dream that in every state where tribals have fought for freedom struggle, a modern museum will be made,” he said.
Modi also said that the Panchayati Raj Day was an important opportunity to fulfill the dreams of Mahatma Gandhi.
“By 2022, we should transform our villages in accordance with the dream of Mahatma Gandhi. I want to make you persons of strong resolve.”
He suggested bee-keeping and planting bamboo on edges of fields as steps which can boost income of farmers. Bamboo has been classified as “grass” by the government to enable its better commercial use, he added.
Modi said the concern these days was not about lack of funds and the given tasks should be carried out honestly and with transparency.
“Not a single child should stay illiterate. If a life is transformed due to a pradhan, India moves in the right direction,” he said, adding he was talking of small things as these bring about a change.
Urging villagers to take care of the health of soil in their fields, he said that large use of chemical fertilisers can cause damage and suggested bringing down use of urea.
Referring to the MGNREGA, he suggested that focus can be on water conservation works in April, May and June and said if every drop of rain water is conserved, it will bring down expenses.
“We have to take forward Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan, Jai Vigyan,” he said.